Despite Gains, Companies Don't Budget for Mobile

 
 
By Karen A. Frenkel  |  Posted 08-26-2014 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Although mobile technology improves employee productivity, particularly in customer service, many small and medium-sized businesses do not budget for mobile devices, according to a new survey by Sage North America. Instead, they take an ad hoc approach, addressing employees' needs as they arise. "Slightly more than three quarters of business executives generally do not budget for mobile devices," according to the report, which was prepared by Joe Langner, a Sage executive vice-president. And yet 68 percent of businesses say smartphones have a positive effect on company productivity, equal to laptops. Furthermore, 70 percent of businesses note that mobile technology has "the most positive effect on customer service." The study surveyed 1,090 small business managers and employees in the United States, 45 percent of whom are owners, CEOs, presidents, controllers or CFOs. The survey findings are highlighted below, followed by five best practices about budgeting for mobile. For more about the "Sage U. S. Survey on Mobile Devices 2014" report, click here.

 
 
 
  • Who Supplies What

    Companies are slightly more likely now, compared to 2013, to let employees buy mobile devices for company business and not reimburse them. 54% of companies surveyed supply mobile devices to their employees, lower than last year (69%).
    Who Supplies What
  • Which Mobile Devices Are Preferred

    Respondents are positive about the effect of mobile technology on their company's productivity. Most commonly mentioned were desktop computers (73%), followed by laptops (68%) and smartphones (68%). Fewer consider tablets to have as positive an effect on productivity (47%).
    Which Mobile Devices Are Preferred
  • Key Benefits From Mobile

    Executives say mobile is most useful for: contact with employees anytime, anywhere, reducing time spent commuting to office, meeting clients' needs by providing in-home and off-site service
    Key Benefits From Mobile
  • Top Five Positive Effects of Mobile Technology

    The areas in which mobile technology produces a positive effect: Customer service: 70%, Conduct business during increment weather: 32%, Brought more work to the company: 21%,Able to conduct remote meetings: 20%
    Top Five Positive Effects of Mobile Technology
  • Failure to Budget For Mobile Technology

    77% of companies plan for, budget, or invest in mobile technology. 5% say their business sets an annual budget for mobile items and adheres to it. 12% set an annual budget and adjust expenditures as needed.
    Failure to Budget For Mobile Technology
  • Most Popular Operating Systems

    Use of Microsoft's Windows dramatically increased since last year. 54% of respondents use Windows, up from 36% last year 50% use IOS, unchanged from last year The Android OS followed at 41%, a decline from 2013
    Most Popular Operating Systems
  • Best Practices: Empower Your Employees With Mobile

    The Sage Survey advises executives to incorporate mobile devices and services that empower employees who interface with customers whether they work in the office, on the road or remotely.
    Best Practices: Empower Your Employees With Mobile
  • Best Practices: Track Your Equipment Expenses

    Consider replacing older, slower, less mobile desktops with laptops, tablets and smartphones. After evaluating your current hardware, create a budget for buying mobile devices and services to improve productivity.
    Best Practices: Track Your Equipment Expenses
  • Best Practices: Budget for Mobile

    The report recommends adding mobile to the annual budget so that employees can be very productive, regardless of their location and other factors.
    Best Practices: Budget for Mobile
  • Best Practices: Develop a BYOD Program

    A bring your own device (BYOD) policy can lower costs while increasing employee productivity. Analyze the pros and cons of BYOD plan to see if this is financially and culturally best for your company.
    Best Practices: Develop a BYOD Program
  • Best Practices: View Mobile as an Investment

    As you develop your budget, consider mobile technology an investment rather than an expense. Add mobile to several budget categories so that it can better support business outreach and drive growth.
    Best Practices: View Mobile as an Investment
 
 
 
 
 
Karen A. Frenkel writes about technology and innovation and lives in New York City.

 
 
 
 
 
 

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